Contribute Try STAT+ Today

Wall Street’s hottest new trend is a 1980s retread: Private firms are merging with so-called blank-check companies in order to go public without the pains and payments that come with a traditional IPO. Those companies, called SPACs, have proliferated since last year, raising billions of dollars on the promise of win-win transactions for investors and entrepreneurs alike. But are the claims too good to be true?

The latest episode of “The Facts, STAT!” takes a dive into the details of SPACs, short for special-purpose acquisition companies. Once a disreputable means for penny stocks to go public, SPACs have become blue-chip investments, endorsed by the likes of Shaquille O’Neal and Alex Rodriguez. They’re particularly popular in biotech, where virtually every name-brand investment fund has launched a blank-check firm on the hunt for promising startups.

Unlock this article by subscribing to STAT+ and enjoy your first 30 days free!


What is it?

STAT+ is STAT's premium subscription service for in-depth biotech, pharma, policy, and life science coverage and analysis. Our award-winning team covers news on Wall Street, policy developments in Washington, early science breakthroughs and clinical trial results, and health care disruption in Silicon Valley and beyond.

What's included?

  • Daily reporting and analysis
  • The most comprehensive industry coverage from a powerhouse team of reporters
  • Subscriber-only newsletters
  • Daily newsletters to brief you on the most important industry news of the day
  • STAT+ Conversations
  • Weekly opportunities to engage with our reporters and leading industry experts in live video conversations
  • Exclusive industry events
  • Premium access to subscriber-only networking events around the country
  • The best reporters in the industry
  • The most trusted and well-connected newsroom in the health care industry
  • And much more
  • Exclusive interviews with industry leaders, profiles, and premium tools, like our CRISPR Trackr.

Create a display name to comment

This name will appear with your comment